Boris Johnson’s Brexit bill passes Commons vote

Prime Minister Boris Johnson | Adrian Dennis/AFP via Getty Images

Boris Johnson’s Brexit bill passes Commons vote

The legislation enables the UK’s exit from the EU on January 31.


12/20/19, 3:36 PM CET

Updated 12/20/19, 3:39 PM CET

LONDON — The House of Commons voted in favor of Boris Johnson’s amended Brexit bill, bringing the U.K. one step closer to leaving the EU by January 31.

In a vote Friday, MPs voted 358 to 234 in favor of the legislation, which implements the Brexit deal agreed with the EU into British domestic law. 

Johnson urged parliament to come together and not consider the Withdrawal Agreement Bill as a victory for only one side of the debate. “This is the time when we move on and discard the old labels of Leave and Remain. In fact, the very words seem tired to me — as defunct as Big-enders and Little-enders, or Montagues and Capulets at the end of the play [references to “Gulliver’s Travels” and “Romeo and Juliet”].”

“Now is the time to act together as one reinvigorated nation, one United Kingdom, filled with renewed confidence in our national destiny and determined at least to take advantage of the opportunities that now lie before us.”

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn agreed it was time to stop debating the outcome of the Brexit referendum and “move on,” following the Conservatives’ landslide victory in the December 12 general election. But he opposed the bill, accusing Johnson of having “ripped up” commitments made by his predecessor Theresa May.

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